Republican Texas Sen. Ted Cruz said Sunday he was demanding the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) investigate crowdfunding site GoFundMe after it shut down a fundraiser supporting truckers protesting Canadian COVID-19 restrictions.
“Today I sent a letter to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) asking that the FTC open an investigation into GoFundMe into whether they’ve committed deceptive trade practices,” Cruz said on Fox News’ “Sunday Morning Futures.”
GoFundMe announced Friday it had shut down the “Freedom Convoy 2022” fundraiser and would no longer distribute donations to the event’s organizers, citing “police reports of violence and unlawful activity” as justification.
The company initially planned to allow donors to request refunds and donate the remaining funds to charities, but elected to automatically refund the contributions after public backlash.
“[W]hen people gave money, they gave money under the promise it would go to the Freedom Convoy, not to whatever left-wing political ideology GoFundMe and other Silicon Valley companies support,” Cruz said. “They are deceiving consumers and it is wrong,”
Cruz’ comments follow announcements from several Republican state attorneys general that they plan to investigate GoFundMe for potentially violating state consumer protections laws. Other prominent Republican lawmakers, including Tennessee Sen. Marsha Blackburn and Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan, have signaled their intent to scrutinize the crowdfunding site.
“They’re defending Canada, but they’re defending America as well. That is, that is courage on display that the government doesn’t have the right to force you to comply to their arbitrary mandates,” Cruz said. “And they’re standing up for freedom, and of course, big government hates it and is trying to crush them.”